A Bad Month for the LGBTQ Community

January was a bad month for the LGBTQ community.  First it was Mississippi that made a brief appearance in the United States Supreme Court.  Then it was Karen Pence, the vice-president’s wife, who made an appearance in the media.  And, finally, the armed services made a brief appearance in the United States Supreme Court.

It began with news on January 8, 2019, when a majority of the United States Supreme Court declined to get involved in a lawsuit challenging a law passed by the Mississippi legislature in 2016.  In that year the legislature said, among other things, that it was alright for state employees and private businesses to refuse services to members of the LGBTQ community. The Mississippi legislature had received word from the God in whom they believe, that members of the LGBTQ community displeased Him notwithstanding the fact that He had participated in their creation.  In order to know what their God thought, it was, of course, necessary for His thoughts to be filtered through the minds of His is self-appointed spokespersons in the Mississippi legislature who were responsible for passing the legislation in question. Those who objected to the law thought that for Mississippi legislators to be considered the vessels into which God would pour anti-LBGTQ venom, was highly suspicious, if not completely incredible. The Supreme Court was not so troubled.  It declined to delve into the complex question presented, and permitted the law to stand.

A few days later it was Karen Spence, the wife of the vice-president, who was in the news.  She, it turned out, was another vessel into which it seemed, God had poured anti-LBGTQ venom.  She had taken a job at a school that does not simply refuse to hire members of the LBGTQ community in any capacity, but refuses to accept children if they participate in or condone homosexual activity. Among its many tenets, as described in the Parent Agreement   that all parents sign, is a denial of the theory of evolution, a denial to which the actions of the school would lend credence. Employees are required to sign an employment agreement that, among other things, says the employee will not do anything that violates the “unique roles of male and female.”

Karen’s husband, Mike, was outraged that anyone was offended that his wife had gone to work at that well spring of intolerance.  The vice-president said that attacking “Christian education, is deeply offensive to us.”  Some might respond that a school that espouses intolerance towards those who do not subscribe to what it thinks its God wants, is offensive to the rest of us.

The final episode occurred on January 22, 2019. The good news was that the bad news imparted to the country on that day, had nothing to do with anyone pretending to be the vessel through which God made His wishes known. It simply had to do with reversing what Trumpsters perceived to be an ill-conceived legacy from the Obama years pertaining to the LGBTQ community. It had to do with military service, something about which the Trump has no first-hand knowledge, due to the debilitating effects of a mischievous heel spur that prevented him from serving in the military.

In 2015, then Secretary of Defense, Ashton Carter, let it be known that he thought the only reason transgender people should be barred from the military should be an individual’s lack of merit. On August 19, 2015, the Secretary said that regulations banning transgender individuals from the military were being dismantled, and on June 30, 2016, those regulations were repealed. Then came the Trump.

Thirteen months after the regulations were repealed, the Trump said transgender people would no longer be permitted to serve in the military.  On August 25, 2017, the Trump ordered the Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of Homeland Security to submit an implementation plan by February 21, 2018, that would, among other things, reinstate the ban on transgender individuals serving in the military.  Not unexpectedly, suits were brought attacking the Trump’s actions.   One trial court that heard a case that arose because of the decision to ban transgender individuals from the military, ruled, among other things, that the reasons the Trump gave for the ban “were not merely unsupported, but were actually contradicted by the studies, conclusions and judgment of the military itself.”

Another case attacking the ban was brought in Washington state and, like its predecessor, the ban was struck down by the trial court.  That court observed that the transgender individuals seeking entry into the military were a protected class and laws impairing their rights were subject to strict scrutiny.  The government appealed that decision, and on January 22, 2019, the United States Supreme Court reversed the decision of the lower court that had prevented the administration from implementing its ban on permitting transgender individuals to serve in the military.  It permitted the ban to go into effect while the matter was litigated in lower courts.  Until the lower courts have ruled on the question, and the case once again arrives at the United States Supreme Court, transgender people will not be permitted to serve in the military.  Only God knows how He will instruct the members of that Court to rule when the case once again appears before it. Those among my readers who are not in touch with God, however, probably know.

More articles by:
February 17, 2020
Sheldon Richman
Anti-BDS Laws Violate Our Freedom
John Horning
NEPA is Our National Defense System

Evelyn Leopold
How the UN’s Middle East Peace Plan Was Trounced by Its Own Members
Stephen Cooper
“Just Mercy” and Justice Don’t Exist in Alabama
Patrick Cockburn
Sinn Fein’s Victory is Ireland’s ‘Brexit Moment’ When Left-Out Voters Turn on the Elite
Ralph Nader
“Democratic Socialism” – Bring it on Corporate Socialists!
Phillip Doe
Every Day’s a Holiday for the Oil Business in Colorado
Binoy Kampmark
Fashion Fetishism, Surgical Masks and Coronavirus
Cesar Chelala
The Democrats’ New Chapter
Robert Koehler
The Wall: Separating Democracy From Voters
Peter Cohen
Time to Retire the “He Can’t Beat Trump” Trope
Sr. Kathleen Erickson
Lessons From Ministering on the Border
Alvaro Huerta
Another Five Lessons for Democrats to Defeat Trump in 2020
Wim Laven
Donald Trump’s Plan for America: Make it Ignorant
Christopher Brauchli
You Tube’s Trump Predicament
Steve Klinger
Trump Shoots Romney at Prayer Breakfast; GOP Shrugs
Elliot Sperber
Ode to the City Bus 
James Haught
Megachurch Mess
Weekend Edition
February 14, 2020
Friday - Sunday
Andrew Levine
Mayor Mike, Worse Than Mayor Pete
Bruce E. Levine
“Sublime Madness”: Anarchists, Psychiatric Survivors, Emma Goldman & Harriet Tubman
Jeffrey St. Clair
Roaming Charges: Leader of the Pack
Jennifer Matsui
The Doomsday Cuckoo Clock
Paul Street
Things Said in Confidence to 4000 Close Friends This Week
Jonathan Cook
Even With Corbyn Gone, Antisemitism Threats Will Keep Destroying the UK Labour Party
Thomas Klikauer
Cambridge Analytica: a Salesgirl’s Report
Joseph Natoli
Vichy Democrats vs. the Master Voice
David Rosen
Sanders vs. the Establishment Democrats: McGovern All Over Again?
Louis Proyect
Marx, Lincoln and Project 1619
Robert Hunziker
Amazon Onslaught
Russell Mokhiber
NPR and the Escalating Attack on Single-Payer Health Care
Ramzy Baroud
Breaking with Washington: Arabs and Muslims Must Take a United Stance for Palestine
Mike Miller
Race and Class: Overcoming the Divides
Michael Brennan
Timeline: How the DNC Manipulated 2016 Presidential Race 
Jacob G. Hornberger
U. S. Lies and Deaths in Afghanistan
Rev. William Alberts
Trump Served Up Projection at the National Prayer Breakfast
Nick Pemberton
The Overwhelming Sex Appeal Of Bernie Sanders
David Swanson
Why This Election Is Different
Dan Bacher
Western States Petroleum Association Tops CA Lobbying Expenses with $8.8 Million Spent in 2019
Christopher Ketcham
The Medium Warps the Message Straight to Our Extinction
Erik Molvar
Trump’s Gutting of NEPA Will Cut the Public Out of Public Lands Decisions
William Kaufman
Tulsi Gabbard: A Political Postmortem
Colin Todhunter
Menace on the Menu in Post-EU Britain
Gregory Elich
Mnangagwa’s Neoliberal Assault on the Zimbabwean People
Ron Jacobs
The Lies of Industry and the Liars Who Sell Them
Binoy Kampmark
Subverting the Blacklist: Kirk Douglas’s Modest Contribution